P | P | P – feat. Spacebands

We recently spoke with Ronan Finnegan, co-founder at Spacebands, creating software and wearable technology to make workplaces safer.

The purpose of article series ‘Product | People | Potential’ is to feature and showcase the very best UK start-ups with grand potential, truly inspiring businesses that are shaking up their sector. We capture and share the stories behind the name. We collate authentic peer to peer real talk, while celebrating the growth and success thus far and gather a glimpse of what’s ahead.

Tareek @ ADLIB: Can you please introduce yourself, what your business does, what stage you are at currently and what makes your business and offering unique?

Ronan: I am Ronan, one of the co-founders at spacebands. spacebands creates software and wearable technology that aims to make workplaces safer.

Tareek @ ADLIB: Can you share the story behind the origin of your business and Service / Product?

Ronan: We started the business by creating a contact tracing wearable within the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. After gaining extensive press coverage and 1000+ customers globally with our social distancing device (including the NHS, MoD, Panasonic, Sony & Amazon), we are now pivoting to create a new multi-feature hazard alert system that will aim to change the future of workplace safety, well-being and insurance. The brand-new wearable and SaaS platform (app and web-app) will alert for a multitude of hazards that aims to protect businesses by preventing workplace injuries, reducing staff sickness, enabling workplace wellness whilst collating a paper trail of live safety data points. Employers will be able to make informed decisions about their workplace safety and will be able to monitor workplace stressors whilst prompting employees to action wellness at work. Privacy is at the forefront of development, all data will be anonymous unless the wearable user (employee) decides to attribute it to themselves manually. Effectively, an employee can decide if they want to track their safety and stress at work and if not, their company can still benefit from the company-wide dataset.

Tareek @ ADLIB: Speaking of People, can you share some challenges you have faced, are facing or are anticipating around scaling and growing your team? Do you have any top tips you could share with those businesses faced with the same issues?

Ronan: We have just completed a hiring cycle. Finding our core team members took us 4 months; a lot longer than expected. It was critical however that we found the right people for both personal values and skills as we are so aware that people will shape our future. We often go with our ‘gut feel’ here at spacebands and are led frequently by this intuition.

Tareek @ ADLIB: Moving to Product, what has been your approach to understanding and implementing product market fit?

Ronan: We have been led entirely by our customer’s voices. When we are building product enhancements, we ask customers what they want us to build and then build it. By doing this, we can ensure that everything we develop has a purpose. We lead all development cycles with storyboards and wireframes before we get into any technicalities.

Tareek @ ADLIB: Investment can often be a challenge for start-ups & scale-ups. Do you have any piece of wisdom you could share around best approach?

Ronan: Seeking investment is a laborious process of repetitive conversations. We turned away £100k of investment in our first 6 months of trading and since decided that investment was a good route for us 2 years down the line; in order to truly scale our business. The investors that have joined us on this journey are all value-led and offer much more than simply money. We are incredibly grateful for their support; we have a great rapport with them and will continue to do so. Wisdom that I could share would be that you run your investment communications similar to a sales cycle – hold information in a CRM and continue to chase people with follow up messages!

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Senior Recruiter

Start-up / Scale-up / Developers & Technology

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Tareek Lamhaouli